Recent Posts

Smoking Safety

7/26/2017 (Permalink)

Community Smoking Safety In the case of fire damage in your home or business, call SERVPRO of University Place/Lakewood West- 253-896-3000

The National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) reported that "smoking materials, including cigarettes, pipes, and cigars, started an estimated 17,200 home structure fires reported to U.S. fire departments in 2014. As the air gets dryer, it's important to remember that it's much easier to start fires than other times of the year. If you are a smoker, smoke responsibly and follow these smoking safety tips, provided by the National Fire Protection Association.

Smoking Safety

  • If you smoke, use only fire-safe cigarettes.
  • If you smoke, smoke outside. Most deaths result from fires that started in the living rooms, family rooms and dens or in bedrooms.
  • Keep cigarettes, lighters, matches, and other smoking materials up high out of the reach of children, in a locked cabinet.

Put It Out

  • Use a deep, sturdy ashtray. Place it away from anything that can burn.
  • Do not discard cigarettes in vegetation such as mulch, potted plants or landscaping, peat moss, dried grasses, leaves or other things that could ignite easily.
  • Before you throw away butts and ashes, make sure they are out. Dousing them in water or sand is the best way to do that.

For more information, visit

University Place Residents: We Specialize in Flooded Basement Cleanup and Restoration!

7/24/2017 (Permalink)

Storm Damage University Place Residents: We Specialize in Flooded Basement Cleanup and Restoration! Be sure to call SERVPRO of University Place/Lakewood West for your water restoration needs!

As residents of Washington, we know it doesn't matter the season- it's bound to rain. A basement can flood at any time, although flooding most often occurs during heavy rainfall. Basements are inherently prone to flooding because they are the lowest level of a building and are normally built partly or entirely below ground level. There are a number of reasons why your University Place basement could flood, including: 

  • A blocked or failed sewer lateral pipe
  • Heavy rain causes surface water to pool around your home
  • Storm sewer backup
  • Sanitary sewer backup
  • Foundation drainage failure
  • Water supply-line break or hot-water tank failure
  • And many more

Have Questions about Basement Flooding?

Call Today - 253-896-3000

If flood water is not handled quickly and properly, it can jeopardize your health and safety, and cause severe damage to your home’s structure. Remember, the longer you wait, the worse the problem will get.

The bottom line: a flooded basement can jeopardize your health, safety, and your home’s integrity. It’s worth making a call to SERVPRO of University Place/Lakewood West and let our trained, professional crews handle the situation safely and correctly. We have earned the trust of hundreds of homeowners, business owners, and property professionals.

We are Flooded Basement Specialists:

  • We are Available 24 hours/7 days per week
  • We’re a Preferred Vendor to many National Insurance Companies
  • We Bill The Insurance Directly – One Less Thing For You To Worry About
  • Our Technicians are Highly-Trained  in Water Restoration Techniques
  • We use s500 IICRC Restoration Standards
  • Advanced Inspection and Extraction Equipment

Basement Flooded? Call Us Today – We’re Ready To Help 253-896-3000

Mold and Your Crawlspace

7/18/2017 (Permalink)

Microbial growth needs three components to grow: organic materials, moisture, and heat. The crawlspace is subject to all three, making it vulnerable to mold growth, along with the location of the crawlspace.

Location, Location, Location

The location of the crawlspace plays a key factor in microbial growth. As it sits on top of the earth, moisture in the dirt may rise up to the subfloor and framing. These organic materials are a breeding ground for mold growth. Moisture typically evaporates, however, it gets trapped in the crawlspace. High humidity levels also encourage mold growth.

The crawlspace is also located beneath the home. If you have any water damage in the interior of the home, it is not uncommon for water to find its way into the crawlspace. It's standard for our technicians to check the crawlspace during a water damage event to remove any standing water, as well as non-salvageable, wet materials, such as insulation.

Combine the organic materials, any moisture from the earth or water damage, and high humidity, the crawlspace is susceptible to mold growth. 

For mold remediation services, call SERVPRO of Tacoma- 253-896-3000

Sewage Cleanup and Restoration

7/13/2017 (Permalink)

Water from sewer system backups should be considered very dangerous. The water is grossly unsanitary and may contain bacteria and viruses that could cause serious illness. Special training and equipment is necessary to safely clean this type of contamination.

There are three major types of contaminated water. SERVPRO of University Place/Lakewood West will inspect that contaminated water to determine the type of water and then plan the appropriate response to safely restore your home or business.

The three types of contaminated water:

Category 1: "Clean Water"

This is water from a clean source, such as a broken clean water supply line or faucet. If left untreated, category 1 water can quickly degrade into category 2 or 3 water depending upon such factors as time, temperature, and contact with contaminants.

  • Water from a clean source like a broken water line
  • If left untreated, can degrade into category 2 or 3

Category 2: "Gray Water"

This water has a significant level of contamination that could cause discomfort or illness if ingested. Sources for category 2 water may include washing machine overflow, toilet overflow with some urine, but no feces, or dishwasher overflow.

  • May contain bacteria and viruses
  • Can quickly degrade into category 3 if left untreated

Category 3: "Black Water"

This water is grossly unsanitary and could cause severe illness or death if ingested, and any contact should be avoided. Sources for category 3 water could include flooding from rivers or streams, water from beyond the toilet trap, water from the toilet bowl with feces, or standing water that has begun to support microbial growth.

  • May contain untreated sewage, harsh chemicals, and microbes
  • Water from flooding rivers or sewer backups

Sewer Backup or Toilet Overflow? Call Us Today- 253-896-3000

Trauma and Crime Scene Cleanup

7/11/2017 (Permalink)

After the police have finished processing a crime or accident scene, the cleaning and restoration process can begin. Many times, crime and accident scenes have blood and other biohazard contaminants that pose a serious health risk. SERVPRO of University Place/Lakewood West will respond immediately and has the specialized training, protective equipment, and experience to safely clean trauma and crime scenes. 

Our technicians follow OSHA and EPA protocols to help transform an unsafe environment back into a clean, safe home or business. Our first focus is always safety, since crime or accident scenes may involve blood borne pathogens, harmful chemicals, and other dangers. We will always treat your property and the people involved with the greatest empathy and respect in the face of trying circumstances.

Crime Scene and Trauma Cleaning Services

  • Fingerprint power and evidence-gathering chemicals
  • Fire extinguisher residue
  • Blood and bodily fluids

For more information, call SERVPRO of University Place/Lakewood West at 253-896-3000.

Vandalism and Graffiti Cleanup

7/7/2017 (Permalink)

Vandalism and graffiti can be very upsetting. It can range from relatively minor pranks to malicious destruction of property. Often simple acts of vandalism, like breaking a window, can cause significant water and mold damage if not addressed in a timely manner. 

SERVPRO will act quickly to remove vandalism and graffiti from home and commercial spaces. In addition to removing spray-painted graffiti from exterior walls, we can also clean driveways, walkways, asphalt, metals, wood, glass, plastic and masonry. Our highly trained technicians can offer the following services:

  • General cleaning and graffiti removal
  • Brick, stone, and concrete cleaning
  • Odor removal and deodorization
  • Debris removal
  • Water damage restoration
  • Fire damage restoration
  • Mold damage restoration
  • Contents Cleaning

Are you in need of vandalism and graffiti cleanup services? Call SERVPRO of University Place/Lakewood West today 253-896-3000.


7/5/2017 (Permalink)

Summer of 2015 was one of the most severe wildfire seasons in the history of the Pacific Northwest. The US Forest Service reported and detailed over 3,800 wildfires within Washington and Oregon which burned more than 1.6 million acres. Wildfires cause more than just burnt forests; the fires also cause poor air quality and smoke damage to structural buildings.

Smoke damage can cause a pervasive odor and the need for a deep-clean of soot from upholstery and carpet if the structure is nearby a wildfire. The professional team comprised of specialized trained technicians at SERVPRO of University Place/Lakewood West respond quickly to disasters. Our technicians can clean upholstery and fabrics, eliminate odors, and restore your business or home to pre-fire condition.

As the 2016 wildfire season begins, the team at SERVPRO of University Place/Lakewood West supports the US Forest Service and its many firefighters in an effort to prevent structural building losses and wish everyone a safe, summer.

To read more on the 2015 Fire Season, visit:

Statistical data provided by:

Firework Safety

6/30/2017 (Permalink)

Fourth of July weekend is a fun time of year as we celebrate our Nation’s Independence. According to the Washington State Patrol, in 2015 there were 481 fireworks- related emergencies in Washington. In an effort to promote injury and fire prevention, here are some recommended safety tips provided by the National Council on Fireworks Safety:

·         Use fireworks OUTDOORS in a clear area; away from buildings and vehicles.

·         Always have a bucket of water and charged water hose nearby.

·         Dispose of spent fireworks by wetting them down and place in a metal trash can away from any building or combustible materials until the next day.

Keep your home and family safe this Fourth of July. From all of us at SERVPRO of University Place / Lakewood, have a safe and Happy Fourth of July weekend.

To read more tips on fire safety, visit:

Aluminum Wiring in Your Home

6/27/2017 (Permalink)

As residents of Tacoma, we recently received a letter from the city of Tacoma fire department warning us about the effects of aluminum wire failure. Residences and buildings built or modified between 1965 and 1972 may potentially contain aluminum electrical wiring. Small aluminum wires are associated with an increased risk of fire. If your home was built or modified during this time, be sure to check for aluminum wiring in your home or business. The city of Tacoma has provided information on how to determine the presence of aluminum, signs of aluminum wiring failure, and how you can fix the problem.

Determining the Presence of Aluminum Wiring

The best way to determine whether or not your structure contains aluminum wiring is to have an electrical professional conduct an inspection. As an alternative if you have sheathed wire visible in unfinished basements, attics, or garages, you can perform a visual check of the plastic sheathing on the cables. The word aluminum or 'AL' may be written on one side of the wiring. After turning off power at your electrical box, you can also look at the exposed wires in outlets or switch boxes. The color of the aluminum wire is silver rather than copper.

Signs of Aluminum Wiring Failure

  • Hot electrical outlet faceplates
  • Unidentified smell of burning plastic
  • Flickering lights
  • Failed electrical circuits

How You Can Fix the Problem

The Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) has researched the fire problem associated with aluminum wiring and recommends three permanent repairs:

  • Rewire the entire home
  • Professionally install COPALUM crimp connectors
  • Professionally install AlumiConn connectors

For more information or questions about aluminum wiring, please contact the Fire Prevention Division by calling 253-591-5740.

Outdoor Events

6/23/2017 (Permalink)

Summer is here! It's the perfect time for outdoor parties, family get-togethers, and BBQ's. Something most of us don't consider is that outdoor events increase the risk of home fires according to the National Fire Protection Association. Luckily, they've provided us a list of tips to consider when hosting an outdoor event.

  • Have an adult present at all times when a portable fireplace is burning
  • Use sturdy candle holders that won't tip over easily
  • Keep anything that can burn, as well as children and pets, at least three feet away from open flames
  • Use battery-operated, flameless candles and solar-powered patio or tiki torches in place of an open flame

In the case your outdoor event doesn't go as planned, SERVPRO of University Place/Lakewood West is ready to help 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. We proud ourselves in being on site within 4 hours of our first notice of your loss. For your fire restoration needs, contact us at 253-896-3000.

For more information, visit the National Fire Protection Association website at